From trainees to teachers

JESS Hamilton and Tim Forbes have just finished their cabinet-making traineeships.

The pair, who work at Drifta Kitchens, have trodden very different paths to complete their traineeships.

Jess was a former timber worker who decided to give cabinet-making a go after the mill she was working at closed, while Tim went to work for Drifta shortly after completing his HSC exams.

“I wandered in wearing a pair of thongs with a few things I’d built,” Jess said.

 “(Owner) Luke (Sutton) said he wanted me to start straight away. The dog was in the car, so we got him a bucket of water and away I went.”

Tim said he was keen to get an apprenticeship after leaving school and was fortunate Drifta was recruiting at the time.

“I applied for a job I’d seen in the paper, met Luke for an interview and started work the following Monday,” he said.

Jess now builds cabinets and camping drawers for four-wheel drives while Tim builds fridge box kitchens for camping trailers.

Mr Sutton said it was a huge achievement for both Jess and Tim to complete their apprenticeships.

“It’s a four year apprenticeship so it’s a fairly major part of your life,” he said.

“Our goal here is to train them and keep them. We want qualified tradespeople working for us.

“Now is when they are most valuable to me as a business owner. They can build items to tradesman quality and they’re now responsible for teaching the next batch of apprentices coming through.”

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